Watermelon Rind Sabzi!

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Watermelon is one of my favorite fruits. But we eat the juicy red part and discard the white rind. Couple of years back my friend brought a chutney made with it. It was very nice and this thought has always played in the back of my mind. Every time I slice a watermelon, I felt guilty about discarding an edible part. Finally decided to try cooking it and am very happy I did it.

You need:

  • Finely diced watermelon rind.
  • Couple of Garlic pods, roughly chopped.
  • Mustard seeds about a teaspoon.
  • Turmeric powder about half a teaspoon.
  • Red Chilly powder about 2 teaspoons but adjust according to taste.
  • Salt
  • Coriander for garnishing.

Be careful while removing and discarding the green outer skin. Its best to cut the watermelon in half and place it on a cutting board. Let the knife run downwards. If you try any other angle there is a good chance your knife will slip and cut your finger.

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Heat oil and saute the garlic and mustard. Add the red chilly powder and turmeric. Mix them well. Add the watermelon rind and cook on low heat. Use low heat and cook till it softens. Midway thru this season with salt.

Garnish with coriander. A splash of lemon juice is optional.

Goes great with rotis.

 

Tapioca Biffins

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I can’t decide if these are biscuits or muffins so I invented a new name…Biffins.

You Need:

  • Grated Tapioca about 800 gms.
  • Some fresh coconut
  • 2 teaspoons of Cumin and fennel seeds.
  • 3 Dry red chilies.
  • Whole Wheat Flour approximately 3 to 4 tablespoons.
  • Sugar as per taste.
  • Salt to season.
  • Grate the tapioca.

Powder the chilies, cumin, fennel and coconut. Add salt and sugar.

Combine the tapioca and the powdered spices. Knead together. It will be very wet. Add whole wheat flour in small batches till the moisture wetness is manageable.

Make into biscuit shapes and bake for 30 mins in a 160C oven. Don’t use butter paper as it has a tendency to stick to the paper. I made this mistake, you don’t need to.

Enjoy with any chutney or ketchup.

Honey Sesame Cabbage

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You need:

  • A full head of cabbage. Cut into long strips.
  • 2 tablespoons of honey
  • 2 tablespoons of sesame oil or extra virgin olive oil.
  • pepper and salt.

Super simple as always.

Just roast the cabbage on a hot grill pan. You can also broil it in the oven. But a stovetop is easier. You may need to do the cabbage in batches. As cabbage shrinks when its cooked you can add them all back into the pan before the final step.

Whisk together honey and oil. Drizzle this over the cabbage. Season with salt and pepper. Its a simple and nice dish that goes great with any grilled protein.

Snake Gourd without Oil

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Snake Gourd is a fantastic vegetable loaded with many health benefits. But it has a tendency to get a oily glaze when cooked. Its something I don’t particularly fancy. This recipe gets rid of this by not using any oil.

You need:

  • Cumin seeds
  • Coriander seeds
  • Dry red chilies
  • Snake Gourd, peeled and cut into small pieces.
  • Chopped up tomato
  • Aamchoor Powder.

Heat a pan and dry roast all the spices. As they release a lovely aroma, add the snake gourd. Cook on high flame and keep stirring. As the snake gourd starts to soften up and this may take only 7 to 8 mins, taste and check if its done. If satisfied, sprinkle some aamchoor powder and salt. Mix it well. But in minute or two, this will form a slightly sticky layer at the base of the pan. Now add the tomato and mix it up. This will clean up the pan.

 

Lentils and Vegetables

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You Need:

  • Any gourd like ridge gourd or bottle gourd.
  • Any lentils like ToorRed Lentils (Masoor Dal) or Petite yellow lentils (Mung Dal) soaked for about 30 minutes.
  • Any Greens like Spinach or Amaranth leaves.
  • Ginger, dry red chilies, coriander seeds and cumin.
  • Onions or preferably shallots.
  • Turmeric and Coriander powder.
  • Coconut oil.

Heat the oil and saute the spices to make it fragrant. Saute the onions/ shallots. Once translucent add the gourd.

Cook for about 5-6 mins on high heat and then sprinkle some turmeric powder and coriander powder. Mix in the lentils and cook for another 4-5 mins.

Add the greens and cook covered on low heat for about 7-8 minutes.

Dry it up on high heat and enjoy a super healthy meal. This does not need any rice or bread. Eat it as it is.

 

Crunchy Barley with Greens

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A healthy snack packed with goodness and taste.

You need:

  • Half cup of Barley, washed and soaked in water for half an hour.
  • Peanuts and Lotus Seeds
  • Any leafy Greens.
  • Coriander powder and turmeric.

Heat coconut oil and fry in barley, peanuts and makhana till they are crunchy. Remove and keep aside.

In the same pan add the greens. Used here is Ponangani Kura, but you can use anything. Avoid boiling the greens by arranging them like a doughnut in the pan. Season with coriander powder, turmeric and salt. Cook till its done.

Combine and serve.

 

Green Papaya and Tofu Salad

A super simple salad you just can’t have enough of.

Just combine together thinly cut slices of a green Papaya, one ripe tomato, two green chilies, crumbled Tofu, two garlic cloves and a lot of chopped coriander.

Dressing is 3 tablespoons of sugar dissolved in the juice of two lemons and a tablespoon of soy sauce.

Best is to serve it chilled. But it may not be able to make the trip to the refrigerator.